ABOUT SEVENTY PEOPLE CLAIM TO BE THE AVATAR
I told Baba the whole story, which I presented partly in the spirit of a confession and partly as a self-justification. During the narrative I would glance at Baba's face, but I didn't find any displeasure or condemnation there. After hearing out the entire incident, Baba asked me if I had told Vaijanath that Meher Baba is the avatar. I answered, "No."
Some of the Mandali were also present in the room. Pointing to Adi, Baba asked, "Don't you think that Bal should have told Vaijanath about My being the Avatar? Don't you take Me to be the Avatar?" Adi, in his characteristically forceful manner, replied, "Baba! You are the Avatar-supreme Perfection Personified." Baba cast a glance at me, and I understood what He meant. I kept quiet.
Then He turned to Dr. Deshmukh and gestured, "What do you think?" Deshmukh paused for a few moments, reflecting on the question. I thought he was going to say something in my favor. He began, "Baba, in a way, You are not just the Avatar; You are beyond any concept that is conveyed by the term Avatar. You are the beyond One." Baba looked at me again. I felt nonplussed and even a little nervous. His eyes lit with a gentle glow of compassion mingled with flashes of divine authority. Baba continued the dialogue, sometimes gesturing, sometimes using the board: "If you on your own could not dare tell Vaijanath that Meher Baba is the Avatar, you could easily have said to him, 'Meher Baba says He is the Avatar.'"
This really silenced me, and I gazed at Baba in dumb adoration and submission. Returning my gaze, Baba explained, "At present, in the East and West, there are about seventy people who claim to be the Avatar, but I tell you, Bal, I am the Real One."
The power and compassion in Baba's glance as He communicated this loving declaration to me carried with it conviction of the truth of what Baba was saying. Hearing these words, I could only fold my hands and lower my head to offer my respects to the Ancient One and mutter in a soft voice, "Yes, Baba!"
GLIMPSES OF THE GOD-MAN, Vol 6, pp. 43-44
1994 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust